Science & technology
Facebook unveils Paper, a Flipboard rivalPublish Date: Jan 30, 2014
Facebook unveils Paper, a Flipboard rival
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FACEBOOK on Thursday unveiled Paper, a Flipboard-like reader app, as it continues to broaden its mobile offerings.

Paper is made up of stories and themed sections, tying together your News Feed with other themes and topics ranging from sports to food, with stories from publications. It will be available in the US on Feb. 3 for iPhone users.

Paper is just the latest step in Facebook's strategy to push more into the mobile world. Beyond its core Facebook app and the Instagram photo-sharing service, it has steadily launched mobile products such as its Messenger app. 

During its earnings conference call on Wednesday, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company was working on more standalone mobile apps. 

This marks a reversal of the company's ill-fated Facebook Home strategy, which essentially took over an Android phone with its own custom user interface. As it turns out, people like Facebook, but not that much.

Still, Facebook's mobile push seem to be paying off, with the company generating more than half of its advertising revenue from that area.

Paper, meanwhile, can be navigated by thumbing through the stories, a la Flipboard. 

You can tilt your phone to pan through panoramic photos from corner to corner, and to see important details like faces. For better or worse, there are full-screen auto-play videos. Stories, meanwhile, get attractive full-screen covers.

Facebook users can also create their own stories, and preview how their posts will look before sharing them.

The company said Paper is the first product from its Facebook Creative Labs, formed to create new apps for phones.

Introducing Paper from Facebook on Vimeo.

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